Lexapro/Celexa caused my RLS

To begin I never had any issues with RLS until I started taking antidepressants. First one was Lexapro 10mg, second was Celexa 20mg. Immediately after my first dose of Lexapro I noticed the RLS. Some nights were worse than others. One time the RLS kept me awake for FOUR days. On this fourth day I was basically a walking zombie. At this point it took everything I had to stay awake, I was at work barely. I called my doctor and he put me on Celexa. I've noticed no change in my sleep. I'll go days without sleep because my legs won't stop twitching long enough for me to fall asleep. This is killing me and I can't handle it for much longer. I'm wanting to try home remedies before I visit a doctor. I've put a heating pad on my legs, muscle cream, a bar of soap under the bed sheets, hot baths, walking..nothing helps. Tonight I will try taking a magnesium and calcium tablet, its supposed to relax my muscles and help me sleep. I just need advice on how others are controlling their RLS because I can't go without sleep for much longer. Last night I slept 2 hours and none the night before. Help please!!

23 Replies

  • Hi brandilafitte

    I do not know if this will help but it is a link to Medications to Avoid if suffering with RLS.  Celexa is listed as one to avoid.


    Have you tried Epsom salt baths/magnesium oil spray on legs? I hope you sleep better tonight.


  • Having an antidepressant is a must for me because of my emotions after my hysterectomy. That is what scares me about me developing RLS, the antidepressant I take helps me with everything mentally. I'm thinking maybe I can try a sleep clinic. But tonight I am trying a magnesium and a calcium supplement. I read it's supposed to relax the muscles and help induce sleep. I'm just beyond tired of not getting a good nights rest. Its hurting me physically and mentally. And its starting to hurt my work ethic because I have no energy anymore. 

  • Well I was hoping the magnesium and calcium supplements were all I needed but I think I need some iron too, idk..

  • I have also suffered with RLS and I take magnesium for it. It is a magic bullet! I take it at night before bed and it has gone away! I have run out of magnesium the last week and it's back! So I'm here to tell you...it works! Try the oils to rub on your legs but also use the pills. 

  • I sure will. Where can I get it? Any help that is sent my way. I've got to keep the RLS under control. Its harder than I thought it would be

  • Bless your heart, yes it is! I was also so miserable! I am doing better without the rls but I just need to get a grip on the other stuff. 

    As for where to get it...

    You can look in your local health food store or going on Amazon, Swansons or another health food site. I know these sites both have these products. 

    I will keep you in my prayers! 

    Have a good night! 

  • Thank you! I am laying on the couch as we speak with a heating pad on my legs. It's starting to do it less and less. What I hate is that I know I'm tired and need to sleep, but getting off this couch and getting no sleep is a mother fucker.  And I'll even stay on the couch to try and sleep but I never do. They need better than we did.

  • I'm glad the magnesium is helping you.

  • I had RLS before taking antidepressants. i was on welbutrin for ten years and never connected that to getting worse over time until I am now consumed with the desire to control the RLS and get some real solid sleep.

  • That's all I've been trying to do with all these home remedies I been trying. But I'll keep him company if you wanna walk some

  • Hey 🙌 sorry to hear this. Hope you are able to get some sleep. I don't know of anything that can help.

  • If you HAVE to take a anti-depressant then i can be hard to control the RLS.  As they make RLS worse for most.   Please look at this website and the treatment page  rlshelp.org   You will see a list fo the anti-d's that are the worse culprits for RLS.  There are two which seem to be RLS friendly, altho if you are in the UK welbutrin is not used as a anti-d and you will not get that one.   If you can maybe change to a more RLS friendly anti-d  that will calm your RLS down, not sure it would disappear, but could be more controllable

  • Could be that your depression stems from the hormone uproar because of the hysterectomy, and throwing drugs at the side effects of the hysterectomy (the depression) isn't the best course of action, but that's what doctors do best. The best move would be to find a doctor (I'd bet not the one you are going to now) that will treat the cause- first test your hormone levels and then prescribe natural hormones to help get them back into balance.

    Another option if you can't pull that off- find some natural antidepressant treatments (search online, there are lots of sites out there) and try combining a lower dose of antidepressant (one that is RLS friendly) with some of those. I know exercise is good for combating depression, getting off sugar and carbs, stuff like that. Here's a good one- huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/...  I just googled "natural antidepressant" and came up with a long list of possibilities. I'd think the side effects of the meds would be worse than the depression, especially since RLS is robbing you of your sleep.  BTW, you sure don't want drug company hormones- the side effects of those are horrendous, and they include depression. They'd just make matters worse. Oh, mercy, does your doctor already have you on HRT??  Is there a forum here for hormones?? (They make synthetic hormones from horse pee. Ugh.)

  • No I'm not on hormone meds. I still have my right ovary that produces enough hormones that I need. The only thing that bothers me about not taking the antidepressants is that I don't want to go back to being a moody bitch that cries over everything. But it's not just my decision whether I take them or not. I have a family to worry about too. 

  • No one is saying not to take any antidepressants, that wouldnt be good for you.  Have you looked at the website yet i posted for you.   Of course you need to discuss this with your doctor, but maybe just maybe changing the anti-d would help. 

  • Oh I definitely agree with you on that. Between the RLS and insomnia, I'm just completely wore down. I can even barely eat right now. But I did make the choice not to take the Celexa last night

  • Many people on reddit report having their depression helped with Kratom, which is an opioid-like herb from South East Asia.  I use it to control the symptoms of RLS, so perhaps it would help both problems for you.  There are fairly extensive discussions of using kratom for RLS on this board: bb.rls.org/index.php?sid=d2...    Just put "kratom" in the search box to read how people are using it.  Good luck!

  • Hi, thank you for posting, this is interesting, I've been using Kratom for 1.5 years now, on a fixed daily dose. I'm also on Lexapro which is known to maybe be one of the culprits. Paradoxically, ive tried reducing the dose and RLS gets REALLY bad. I think Kratom helps but it's hard to say because every night is different.

  • Dear Brand!  I know some will disagree,but I had the worlds worst case of this miserable problem..Considering suicide,I tried one last resort...Tramadol..Some don't like it!  I got off Oxycontin with it.It's not real good for pain,but it stops my R.L.S..It is a controlled substance,but not as severe,as the others..I'd be smoking cannabis,if it was legal..If nothing else helps you,I suggest Tramadol..Read up on it at WEB>>>MD...Talk to your doctor...# to 400 MG,a day,or less..Take the least amount you can,but it will work..I promise...Not expensive either....carol

  • Thank you for not just telling me to stop taking my meds. Before I started them I was an emotional bitch and I didn't like who I became. I'm more how I want to be, minus the RLS and insomnia.

  • Oh no that is awful. We all know how you must be feeling, sleep deprivation is just the worst thing.... I hope you find some relief and get some help on here. Take care x

  • Checking for a cure/solution for my wife. I saw Relaxis, a vibrating pad to be used in bed but cannot get anything in Australia. I have suffered with RSL but only mildly. I have been using Revitive circulation booster to reduce major swelling of my feet & lower legs & found that using the revitive just before bed it has been a big help. When I forget to use it late in the day I find getting out of bed & having a 20 minute session eases things up to allow me to fall asleep. I'm probably lucky in that when I fall asleep, it takes a lot to disturb me. I would like to get the Relaxis that gets used in bed for my wife, anyone know a way to get one outside of America? Good luck, sufferers,the revitive is worth a try, especially if you can borrow one or trial it from your chemist. Cheers.

  • My heart goes out to all of you suffering from RLS. I'm a 60 YO female and Have had this condition for at least 10 years. I just read that Lexapro is listed as one of the four antidepressants that cause RLS. Five years ago my doctor prescribed Lexapro, which did the trick for depression/anxiety, however over the last 2 years, RLS has become worse. The paradox is this. I've tried backing the Lexapro dose, and the symptoms became worse again. It doesn't make sense. I'm also on Wellbutrin which I've had to increase from 150 to 300 mg. This seems to work for awhile but not always. And some nights are worse than others. I'd like to hear from those of you who have had similar experiences. I'm desperate for help too, I would like to become a partner to my husband rather than a liability.

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